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Pu-239

review by Zach B.

 

 

MPAA Rating: R (For Language, Violence, Sexual Content and Brief Drug Use)

Running Time: 98 Minutes

Starring: Paddy Considine, Radha Mitchell, Oscar Isaac

Based on the short story by: Ken Kalfus

Written For The Screen and Directed by: Scott Z. Burns

 

Studio: HBO

Retail Price: $26.98

Features: Audio Commentary with Writer/Director Scott Z. Burns and Executive Producer Peter Berg

Specs: 1.85:1 Anamorphic Widescreen, English Dolby Digital 5.1, Spanish Dolby Surround, English Subtitles, French Subtitles, Spanish Subtitles, English Closed Captions, Chapter Selection (10 Chapters)

Released: March 25th, 2008

 

 

"Pu-239" is presented in 1.85:1 anamorphic widescreen, and it's a terrific transfer. Except for instances with noise and edge halos, as well as some blemishes, this is a very sharp and clean transfer. The stylized, filtered look director Scott Burns employs comes off really well here, with surprisingly vibrant and deep color saturation. Detail is excellent too, and fleshtones look pretty accurate. This is a sharp transfer that really captures that really breathes life into film's excellent visuals.

 

"Pu-239" features a very fine Dolby Digital 5.1 track. Dialogue is clear and easy to hear, while Abel Korzeniowski's riveting score is mixed well through the channels. Subwoofer use is a lot better than I anticipated, while the rears feature some pretty good surrounds to bring you into the story: outside traffic, murmurs in a station and a few instances of action. Overall, the track leans toward the front, but has enough jolts to make it a pretty discrete track.

Also included is a Spanish Dolby Surround track, English closed captions, plus subtitles in English, French and Spanish.
 



The only extra is an Audio Commentary with Writer/Director Scott Z. Burns and Executive Producer Peter Berg. It's a pretty good track, which focuses a lot on the movie's production. Berg often prompts his good friend Burns with questions, be it about deleted material or shooting on location. Burns gives a lot of background information and his research relevant to his script, and offers plenty of stories about the cast and crew. Burns also reveals a lot of thought behind his choices, such as the decision to shoot it in English. It's a very chatty track filled to the brim with anecdotes, but it is a bit on the dry side. Still, I really felt that I was with Burns on the shoot given all the details he shares. Fans of the movie should enjoy it.

 

"Pu-239" is a pretty gripping thriller, which is made all the more interesting in the sense that its a character study and ethics tale. The DVD is well put together, with a good 5.1 mix, solid transfer and highly informative commentary track. I'd recommend a purchase if you saw it on HBO and really enjoyed it. Otherwise, this is a solid rental.